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Should I Leave my Pool Cover On or Off in Winter

Winter is almost here and so now is the right time to think about how you can winterise your pool for the colder months. A common question pool owners have about preparing their pool for winter is whether they should keep it covered with their solar blanket. Here we will look at the whether you should leave your solar blanket on or off in the coming winter months.

Covering Your Pool During Winter

solar swimming pool cover Covering your pool with with a solar blanket is one of the best ways to prevent heat loss. A solar blanket can reduce the heating cost of your pool by as much as 70%. But as we discussed in this article, taking care of your pool cover is important if you want to prolong its life.

So can you leave the solar blanket on the pool over winter? The answer is yes. As you will see below there are a number of reasons why you should cover your pool during winter with your solar blanket.

The Benefits Of Covering Your Pool With Your Solar Blanket

Leaving your solar blanket on the pool over winter will allow you keep leaves and other organic material out of the pool. Which means less cleaning for you and also less food for algae or other bugs.

The other benefit of keeping the blanket in place is it will help to minimize chemical evaporation. You’ll spend less money on pool chemicals and less time adding them.

Cleaning Your Solar Blanket Before Winter

With winter on its way, and the pool being used less frequently, now is the ideal time to give your solar blanket a thorough clean. The best way to do this is using a mild dish washing soap. Follow these simple steps to ensure that your solar blanket is properly cleaned.

Pool Cover Cleaning

Step One: First wet the blanket then mix a bucket with a weak solution of dish washing soap.

Step Two: Use your pool pole and your pool brush to thoroughly scrub the blanket.

Step Three: Once you have finished scrubbing use a hose to remove the dirty water. If you place your blanket on a sloped section of your lawn you will find it is easier to rinse.

Tip – When cleaning the solar blanket make sure that you don’t leave it out on the lawn. It can heat your lawn just as quickly as your pool. A solar blanket can burn your lawn in less than one hour if left in place. Not only that, but a pool cover can be damaged by the sun if it’s left out of water.

Storing Your Solar Blanket Safely

If you do decide to remove your solar blanket for winter make sure that it is stored properly. Most solar blankets come with a large bag that you can use for storage. Once the blanket is cleaned, you’ll need to dry it as much as you can, then you can fold it up.

If you do store your solar blanket in its bag make sure not to store any other items on top of it. This can lead to splits and cracks.

The best approach for storing your solar blanket however, is to use its reel. Solar blankets are designed to be rolled rather than folded. Use a PVC pool cover cover to ensure that the blanket is properly protected from sun, rain and debris.

Keeping your solar blanket in place is the best way to ensure that your pool remains properly protected during the winter months; assuring you of no nasty green surprises come summer.

We would love to hear about your experiences with Should I Leave my Pool Cover On or Off in Winter. Please leave your comments below and share the article with anyone you think may be interested.

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Swimming Pool Covers

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Related Reading:

How to Winterize Inground Pool

7 Ways to Prevent Algae in Your Pool this Winter

7 Essential Winter Maintenance Tips

9 thoughts on “Should I Leave my Pool Cover On or Off in Winter”

  1. New above ground pool so this is the first time I will be closing for winter. I think I’m all set with your winter chemical kit, skimmer and return plugs, air pillow and winter pill. But I have a question about what to do with the solar cover. Can I leave it in the pool under the winter cover or do I have to take it out and store for winter?

    • It’s best to take it off and store it. You may find leaves and water get under your winter cover. If this happens, it will mean a big mess when you reopen your pool.

  2. I live in Pennsylvania. Can I reel the cover up put the white cover and a tarp over it , can it sit on my patio over the winter months. It’s so long I’m having a hard time trying to figure out what to do with it over the winter months.
    Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

    • If you’re going to store your pool cover, it’s best to take it off the pool, clean the cover thoroughly and dry it out. If you don’t dry it, it will likely get mouldy.

  3. Does anyone recommend leaving your solar blanket on an above ground pool and then putting a winter cover over all of it?
    This will alleviate having to pull it off, clean it off, let it dry, and storing it folded up in the garage all winter long.

    • It’s best to take it off. You don’t want leaves and water sitting on the cover all winter if it gets underneath your winter cover. It will leave a big mess and will take you longer to clean than storing it properly at the beginning of winter.

  4. Thank you for elaborating on the benefits of keeping your pool covered during the winter. It was helpful when you said that having a pool covered lessen chemical evaporation. This is the first winter my aunt will have her pool. She will be interested to know that keeping it covered will require less maintenance.

  5. I have a friend who just got a pool and has been looking into getting a pool cover for his pool. I never realized that having a pool cover would minimize chemical evaporation. These are really helpful tips to make sure the pool is clean and to make things easier and cheaper.

  6. From the cover point of view:

    Risk on leaving it on the water:
    Chlorine concentration might go over 2.5 and then damage the cover (if you have a chlorinator/saltpool)

    Benefit of leaving the cover on the water:
    – cooling and avoidance of chemical concentration. On warm winter days if stored on the roller without being washed on both sides there is a risk that chlorine and other chemicals getting more concentrated and then destroys the plastic.
    – not need to hose the cover on both sides before storing 😉


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